BRATTLEBORO >> Three years ago, the New England Center for the Circus Arts started in earnest to conceive of a new home and what it might include.

In December 2014 a generous donor bought the three-plus acre parcel off Town Crier Drive for NECCA's new home. A capital campaign to raise $2.5 million began. In 2015 it was decided to sequence the campaign into two parts.

At this time, funds have been raised to break ground on the first phase of the project — the trapezium building, which will be ready for occupancy in June 2017. The building will be an 8,600-square-foot building incorporating a gymnasium for circus arts training and performances and administrative office space. The first floor will have a 5,800 square-foot trapezium with a ceiling height of 40 feet and a tramp wall and trampoline plus space for reception office, vestibule and rest rooms. The trapezium will allow for full flying trapeze training indoors year round, as well as other circus arts including jugging, unicycle, acrobatics, teeter-board.

Phase two will be a smaller building that will include essential training studios, as well as work space for staff and coaches. A grand opening will be planned once the entire project is completed.

On Thursday, Sept. 29 at 5:30 p.m., there will be an official groundbreaking, including special guests such as Governor Peter Shumlin, NECCA Board President Kate Anderson, Marcia Steckler, Doug Cox, NECCA founders Elsie and Serenity, Bill Forchion, and Circus Smirkus founder Rob Merman.

Guests are invited to bring their shovels and circus spirit.